An Overview of Dual Diagnosis and 4 Ways of Breaking the Stigma

More than half of those with a drug use issue also have a mental illness. There is a strong correlation between mental health disorders and substance misuse; around one-third of those with a mental health diagnosis also exhibit some signs of addiction, and more than half of those with severe drug or alcohol addictions also suffer from mental disorders. A dual diagnosis is when a person has a mental health illness and an addiction disorder.

An Overview on Dual Diagnosis.

As aforementioned, to have a dual diagnosis means that a person has been identified as suffering from both drug use (such as opioid or alcohol abuse) and a mental health issue, such as anxiety, depression, or personality disorder. Dual diagnosis is also known as comorbidity or co-occurring disorders. Dual diagnosis treatment can vary depending on which disorders are present but will often center on alleviating mental symptoms and decreasing drug abuse. However, very few individuals seek dual diagnosis treatment because of the several stigmas that have been associated with it. Understanding some ways of breaking these stigmas is important.

4 Ways of Breaking the Stigma Associated with Dual Diagnosis.

Reducing the negative connotations connected with mental health and drug use dual diagnosis is crucial to encouraging people to seek professional assistance. Here are 4 ways of breaking that stigma:

  1. Awareness and education.

Education and raising awareness are two of the most powerful tools for combating the stigma that surrounds dual diagnosis. Dispelling misconceptions and preconceptions surrounding dual diagnosis can be facilitated via education regarding the conditions’ origins, symptoms, and available treatments. Normalizing dual diagnosis and getting more individuals to seek care may be accomplished via social media, public campaigns, and other methods.

  1. Language matters.

Language has the power to shape perceptions, and how we characterize people with co-occurring diseases may have a major effect on how others see them. Stigma can be mitigated by using person-centered language that focuses on the individual rather than their illness or behavior. As an example, avoiding labels like “addict” or “mad” in favor of “a person with a drug use problem and mental health issue” might aid in reducing the stigma attached to dual diagnosis.

  1. Empathy and compassion.

Those who are dealing with a dual diagnosis should be treated with empathy and compassion, not stigma and condemnation. Recognizing the complexities of the problems faced by people with co-occurring diseases helps us create a more accepting and inclusive atmosphere.

  1. Advocacy and support.

Fighting the stigma of dual-diagnosis patients requires more than raising awareness. Individuals with dual diagnoses need all the assistance they can get, including fighting for access to services like integrated therapy and support groups. Reducing stigma and fostering an inclusive culture can also be aided by showing people with co-occurring illnesses that they have support and are not alone.

Seek Our Premier Dual Diagnosis Services.

In addition to their drug and alcohol problems, most individuals who visit Taylor Recovery Center are also dealing with mental health issues. Our treatment experts believe that true healing can only begin when both ailments are treated at once, and patients are given the time and space they need to recover, physically and mentally, fully. Taylor Recovery Center is here to support you or a loved one if you or they are battling both mental health and drug use disorders. Call our admissions staff to discuss our individualized treatment options.

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